Captain Beefheart and His Magic Band
Cannes, beach opposite Hotel Martinez, 2nd Midem Pop Festival, 1968, with Captain Beefheart (voc.), Alex St. Clair Snouffer (guit.), Jeff Cotton (guit.), Jerry Handley (bass guit.), John French (dr.), 3:41 min.
In its second edition in early 1968, the Midem music fair, founded in 1967, was brave enough to allow Captain Beefheart to perform on the beach at Cannes, opposite the Martinez hotel. Under the ironic title »Cœur de bœuf sur le sable,« a recording was made for the French TV show Bouton Rouge, and this recording survives today. The Magic Band played two songs from the first Beefheart LP Safe as Milk (1967), Electricity, and Sure ’Nuff ’n Yes I Do, with their highly accentuated and syncopated jumpy blues parodies, while the Captain, wearing his signature top hat, masterfully mistreats the syllables, elongating them in all directions. »Eeelectriiiciiitiiie«—with his onomatopoeic and hacked poetry, Beefheart’s voice tries to woo the audience on the beach promenade. Chewed through and through, and thoroughly shaken up, the soundbites drop like pastose drops of oil paint onto a canvas whose surface is illuminated by the sun.